Just Who Was Edward VI Of England?

We take a closer look at the history and life of Edward VI Of England and his impact on history and how he became known as the forgotten Tudor King.

When learning about the monarchy, there are a number of very fascinating time periods that are brought up.

Without a doubt, however, one of the most interesting time periods is the times of the Tudors.

Now, ordinarily, when you talk about the Tudors and monarchs, it is Henry VIII who grabs the headlines, but today we’re looking at somebody different. Specifically, we’re looking at the ‘forgotten Tudor King’ Edward VI.

Here’s a brief look at the life and times of Edward VI of England.

Just Who Was Edward VI Of England?

Edward VI of England’s Early Life

Edward was born in 1537, on the 12th of October, at Hampton Court.

His mother was Jane Seymour and his father Henry VIII.

Henry had longed for a male heir for years, and upon Edward’s birth, the birth was both celebrated and treated with relief as the volatile king had finally been granted his wish.

Edward was a strong and healthy child, which too pleased the king and of course the public.

Just Who Was Edward VI Of England?
Prince Edward in 1538, by Hans Holbein the Younger.

Aged six, he began his formal education and began to learn Italian, French and Spanish. He was also a talented musician and began to study varius musical instruments, including the lute.

Accession To The Throne

In early 1547, Henry VIII had passed away.

On the 20th of February, Edward was crowned the king aged nine.

Because of his age, Edward’s uncle Edward Seymour took charge and established himself as the protector of the realm.

Seymour and the Archbishop of Canterbury intended on making England a fully protestant state. With support from the young king, a prayer book was created and the Act of Uniformity to enforce it.

In the summer of 1549, West Country peasants, outraged at the prayer book, revolted in protest. As if that wasn’t bad enough, France also declared war on England.

In 1552 a new prayer book was commissioned, and again, was avowedly protestant.

Now, religious imagery was destroyed, altars were transformed into tables, and religious orthodoxy was enforced by an even stricter Act of Uniformity.

Just Who Was Edward VI Of England?
Edward as Prince of Wales in 1546 attributed to William Scrots.


Soon, it became obvious that Edward was afflicted with TB, and did not have much time left.

Not wanting to undo the religious reforms that had taken place, the Duke of Northumberland convinced Edward to approve a brand-new order of succession.

This would basically declare that Edward’s sister Mary I of England was illegitimate and that Northumberland’s daughter-in-law, Lady Jane Grey, would be next in line, despite being a distant relative of Henry VIII.

Just Who Was Edward VI Of England?
Edward VI and the Pope

Edward VI of England died on the 6th of July 1553, aged just 15.

Lady Jane did indeed succeed him, but only briefly, as thanks to overwhelming support, Mary, Edward’s sister, usurped the queen and took to the throne.